520 Park Avenue has upped the ante on palatial living on the Upper East Side with a price tag to match.

Park Avenue will soon be sporting an upper crust limestone tower — probably the most expensive piece of property on the New York City market today. (Entry-level units start at $18 million.) 

The Robert A.M. Stern-designed 520 Park Avenue will soar 54 floors into the Manhattan skyline, becoming the tallest and arguably most exclusive building on the Upper East Side. “It’s not one of the best, it’s the best,” said Louis Buckworth, 520 Park Avenue’s Director of Sales, “and it’s not one of the most expensive, it’s the most expensive.”

Yes, it’s a prestigious address and, “this is the only project on the Upper East Side of this scale, this caliber, and this level of finish,” he continued.

“This project lends itself to a domestic buyer because we only have 33 full-floor apartments, where the smallest unit size is 4,613 square feet, meaning you never have to share your floor with anyone.” By their size and layout, 520 Park Avenue’s residences appeal to those looking to spend an extended period of time in the unit, rather than purchase for investment purposes.

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The project has been compared to 432 Park Avenue, which is, “a spectacular development too,” as Buckworth agreed. “But that is a Midtown product, whereas we are on the Upper East Side. I think people who buy on the Upper East Side only want the Upper East Side. It’s very specific; they don’t want to live anywhere else. And we’re the only game in town when it comes to that.”

A Zeckendorf development, 520 Park Avenue is a collaboration with Robert A.M. Stern, drawing on their success of 15 Central Park West. 

“Here, Stern has done both interiors and exteriors,” said Buckworth, who reminded us that the great designer has a huge following, similar to the Zeckendorfs. “He takes the best of what has been designed in the past and puts it together in a hybrid version that delivers an old-world feel.” It’s prewar architecture in a modern setting.

“Here you have high ceilings, big windows, fantastic amenities, and that is really the nuts and bolts of it.”

Once completed, 520 Park Avenue will have all the elegant finishes and luxurious amenities you would expect from a property of this level: a two-level fitness center, swimming pool with vaulted ceilings and hand-carved stone walls, climate-controlled wine cellars, and that’s just the beginning. “There is probably no other building that has this ratio of amenities and staff to units.”


“The master bedroom suites are the best in the market,” with large walk-in closets and two onyx-paneled bathrooms with breathtaking views through bay windows. The expansive, windowed kitchens by Christopher Peacock include smart ovens that can actually teach you how to cook.

It’s true that technology is a big factor in the building. The elevator system, for instance, will be operated through your cellphone. In the units there will be a tiny little sensor for heating and other controls, so you never ever have to touch a wall panel.

All of the residences will offer unparalleled views of Central Park, downtown, and the Upper East Side historic district. Each apartment will have its own elevator landing, and the duplexes will boast artful sweeping staircases. Then, there’s the jaw-dropping $130 million penthouse

But the truly exciting floor, according to Buckworth, is below street level: “It’s something we are calling the 520 Club — it will be like Annabel’s in London.”

It’s going to be a spectacular space, he promises, where Stern has pulled out all stops. “As you step out of the elevator, there will be sensational marble floors and lovely wood paneling all the way through. We will have a catering kitchen, big wine cellars… The space can be used very much like a library, or to sit and have a drink. It can also double up as a screening room.”

Palatial may just be an understatement at 520 Park Avenue. And to remind us, Buckworth quipped, “The lobby’s Sarrancolin marble is the very same that was used for the fireplaces in the Palace of Versailles.”

It’s not only kings who like to be surrounded by splendid things…

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